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|James Spader||Jack Pozzi|
|Mandy Patinkin||Jim Nashe|
|M. Emmet Walsh||Calvin Murks|
|Charles Durning||Bill Flower|
|Joel Grey||Willy Stone|
Jim Nashe worked as a fireman, but a large inheritance and a divorce from his wife has left him free to buy a new car and see the country at his leisure.
He picks up a hitchhiker, Jack Pozzi, who turns out to be a professional gambler. Pozzi tells how he just lost $10,000 to a pair of eccentric old millionaires in a poker game, simply through a bad stroke of luck. With money and time to spare, the intrigued Nashe offers to back Pozzi with $10,000 for a rematch.
The wealthy men, Flower and Stone, live together on a huge estate. They willingly agree to another game, but are not the suckers Pozzi takes them for. They win again. Nashe puts up his car as collateral against the cash if Flower and Stone will cut cards, winner take all. Nashe loses.
No clear alternative exists except to work off the debt. The quirky Flower and Stone have a pile of 10,000 heavy stones, said to be from a 15th Century castle originally. They would like to build a wall on their property, so they tell Nashe and Pozzi that if they devote the next 50 days to erecting the wall, their debt will be paid in full.
A foreman named Calvin Murks keeps an eye on the two men. Nashe methodically goes about his task, carrying the stone, but Pozzi becomes increasingly unhinged, feeling like a slave. Pozzi takes offense at a snide remark by Murks and assaults him, whereupon Murks begins coming to work armed with a gun.
Pozzi attempts to escape. His badly beaten body is found. Nashe can't be sure who did this, although Murks seems a likely suspect. Pozzi eventually disappears and Nashe fears that he's dead. He privately decides to get even, the best way he knows how.